Contact orders in bill ‘too inflexible’

Legislation to enforce child contact orders should ensure the
safety of children and parents, a coalition of charities has

As the Children and Adoption Bill received its second reading in
the House of Lords last week, Barnardo’s, NCH and Women’s Aid
called for it to be amended to give courts powers to enforce safe

They said the bill, which includes penalties for parents who stop
contact, assumed women were denying non-resident fathers contact
unreasonably when the reason could be concern for the safety of
their children or themselves.

Barnardo’s principal policy officer Alan Coombe said: “The priority
at all times should be to ensure that contact orders are safe for
children, before they are enforced. It is vital that courts should
not put children or parents in danger.”

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